A total of 87 toppers from CBSE and universities across the country on Sunday got the opportunity to watch the 71st Republic Day Parade from the Prime Minister's box. The HRD Ministry seeks list of toppers from CBSE and various universities every year and then selects students from each CBSE region and universities across the country.
A total of 105 students -- 50 from undergraduate, postgraduate or PhD programmes and 30 from Class 10 and 25 from Class 12 -- were selected. However, only 87 of them attended the programme.
Union HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' later interacted with the students and awarded them with the Certificate of Appreciation.
"The students are the future of the country and the responsibility of creating a new and prosperous India is on them. India has one of the world's largest education systems with over 1,000 universities, 40,000 colleges, 10,725 standalone institutes, more than 1 crore teachers, 16 lakh schools and 34.6 million students," Nishank said at the award function.
India has largest number of youth population and this strength can make the country a global superpower and an economic giant, he said.
The government has set an ambitious target of achieving a 50 pc gross enrolment ratio compared to the current 26 pc in higher education by 2030 to equip its working population with employable skills, he added.